IEEEXP Special Track @ ILRN2017



ST5. Immersive and Engaging Educational Experiences


Special Track Chairs

  • Johanna Pirker, Graz University of Technology, Austria
  • Foaad Khosmood, California Polytechnic State University, USA

Program Committee 

  • Allan Fowler, Kennesaw State University
  • Brian Mcdonald, Glasgow Caledonian University, UK
  • Dominic Kao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
  • Kai Erenli, UAS bfi Vienna, Austria
  • Ryan Locke, Abertay University, UK
  • Volker Settgast, Fraunhofer Austria, Austria
  • Kai Erenli, University of Applied Sciences BFI Vienna, Austria
  • Zoë J. Wood, California Polytechnic State University, USA
  • Britte H. Cheng, SRI International, USA
  • Helen Wauck, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, USA
  • Guenter Wallner, University of Applied Arts Vienna, Austria


  • Development of cross-curricular key skills using a 3D immersive learning environment in schools (Full Paper in Springer)Daisy Abbott (Glasgow School of Art Glasgow, UK) Stuart Jeffrey (Glasgow School of Art Glasgow, UK) Anastasia Gouseti (University of Hull, Hull UK) Kevin Burden (University of Hull, Hull UK), and Mhairi Maxwell (Glasgow School of Art Glasgow, UK).

Pedagogical opportunities offered by 3D immersive environments are not restricted to subject-based knowledge but also include non disciplinary and cross-curricular key skills. This pilot study introduced a large 3D scene of a non-extant architectural exhibition into teaching and learning activities at three UK schools. From observation and qualitative data capture, a comparative case study identified a number of pedagogical opportunities and challenges. Despite diverse teacher and student approaches, a number of common factors were identified including constructionist teaching methods and the suitability of 3D environments for developing cross-curricular key skills and capabilities. In relation to the literature, this paper analyses how subject-aligned use of the 3D model met with differing levels of success, identifies four key skills that emerged from student use of the model across all three schools, and considers how challenges might be translated into further learning opportunities.



Patricia Rodrigues (Universidade Aberta, Lisbon, Portugal) and José Bidarra, (Universidade Aberta, Lisbon, Portugal).

Abstract. Transmedia storyworlds allow students to express themselves and take part in a shared culture while developing learning paths. Whilst the use of transmedia storytelling in formal learning environments has been steadily gaining ground among educators, documented cases of its application are still sparse. This paper reports on a transmedia learning storyworld targeted to English as Second Language students by providing insight on the design of the storyworld and analysis of its core elements. The potential and challenges of applying a transmedia approach in an educational setting are explored through the description of the implementation of a prototype version of a transmedia learning storyworld and discussion of issues emerging from the application process. Based on the insights acquired during this stage, the paper concludes with a set of considerations to take into account in the development of future research in the transmedia learning field.


Vitor Ribeiro (Minho University/ESEPF, Lab2PT BRAGA, Portugal) and Vânia Sousa (ESEPF,CIPAF, Oporto, Portugal).

Abstract. Early education plays an important role in the education system and students success in a digital society. Kindergarten pedagogy innovation by integrating technology is recognized as lacking research, however an area which needs to be improved. In this context, augmented reality showed an unprecedented growth, particularly in what regards society and marketing purposes, being recognized as having great potential this decade in the educational innovation area. This ongoing research-based methodology aims to understand both students and educator’s perceptions, abilities and difficulties in using augmented reality. The Case study reports to a Portuguese kindergarten with a class of five-year old students (N=24). The project was designed to enhance children’s knowledge about the ocean species´ characteristics (habitat, length/ size, food). A world map was produced and augmented reality was added to improve their motivation in the learning process and to acquire research skills. Furthermore, the study provides evidence of AR capabilities to promote interactive and collaborative work.



Immersive and engaging experiences are powerful teaching tools and allow innovative forms of entertainment, learning, training, and other experiences. More and more virtual reality platforms, virtual world environments, augmented/alternate reality applications and game -based experiences, and various forms of interactive media are designed to create engaging and immersive experiences in an educational setting. This can be a traditional classroom, a virtual and remote classroom setting or activities that further the educational agenda.

In this track, various forms of interactive media and “entertainment with purpose” are discussed to create different forms of engagement. In this special track we discuss how we can design, develop, and analyze educational environments to be both, immersive and engaging. The track does not only cover research on design, development, and analysis of such environments, we also invite submission describing non traditional and traditional design practice and development approaches to create different engaging experiences.


The topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Learning: learning in immersive environments, augmented realities, virtual realities, virtual worlds, and games
  • Design: design techniques, practices, methods
  • Analysis: frameworks, exploration studies, user studies
  • Technology: platforms, devices, engines, environments, graphics, navigation, interactions, user analysis, data analysis, procedural content generation, artificial intelligence
  • Non- traditional, non -classroom and non- curricular learning environments
  • Development approaches to create different engaging experiences